Karen Richards


Karen Richards has been a volunteer reporter since the fall of 2012.

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You won’t see many white sheep at this weekend’s  Black Sheep Gathering at the Lane County Fairgrounds. The show was founded 41 years ago to preserve the genetics of black, brown and grey animals.

The event began in the mid-1970s with gatherings held at people’s homes. It’s grown every year and this year will take over the convention space as well as the expo barns at the fairgrounds. Wayne Thompson has been involved for 35 years:

OR Department of Forestry

It’s officially wildfire season in Oregon. As of Tuesday, every district in the state is subject to fire restrictions.

Most years, it’s around July 4th before the northwest part of the state declares fire restrictions. The Oregon Department of Forestry’s Rod Nichols says low snowpack and dry weather have accelerated the season. He says the rules apply mostly to industrial work:

Nichols: “Logging operations for example need to have a fire watch present after they finish logging for the day and they also have to have fire suppression equipment positioned on site.”

Karen Richards

Photos were taken Friday evening, June 12. 

Karen Richards

The blimp flying over Eugene the past few days is on a summer farewell tour. Goodyear’s 13-year old “Spirit of America,” is being decommissioned in August.

The blimp is being replaced by a zeppelin, a more maneuverable craft with some internal structure. Eddie Ogden is a historian for Goodyear. He says Eugene is a great location for customer appreciation flights:

Ogden: “We came in to Eugene, because first of all we haven’t been here since 2007, and it was a good stop on the way up to Washington where the U.S. Open is being held.”

Karen Richards

The NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championship is halfway done. The last two days feature nothing but finals. Both the University of Oregon’s men and women finished their first day in the lead.

The Duck men are looking to repeat last year’s title win. They performed well, as they were expected to, on Wednesday. Senior Sam Crouser won the javelin for the second year in a row and has high hopes for the team:

University of Oregon

The NCAA track and field championships take place this week at Hayward Field. For the first time ever, the men's and women's teams will compete on different days.

The coaches and administrators decided early this year to separate the competitions. Shortly after, ESPN announced plans to expand its TV coverage of the event, including airing Friday's men's championship on ESPN and Saturday's women's championship on ESPN 2. Some athletes are less than enthusiastic.

City of Eugene

The City of Eugene has coordinated a pilot project to bring high-speed fiber optic cable to three buildings downtown. Two were connected last week.

Fiber optic lines already span much of Eugene. The schools, the city, and major medical facilities have it. But a lot of other fiber is “dark.” It hasn’t been taken from its source to people who would use it. The city spent 100-thousand dollars to help light some of the dark cable, hoping to attract and retain businesses downtown. Economic Development Planner Anne Fifield says it’s not just tech companies who can benefit:

Eugene Airport

This fall, Eugene air passengers will have a new nonstop flight option. Horizon Air announced today (Monday) they're adding daily direct flights to San Jose.

San Jose was identified over five years ago as an underserved market. A partnership between the Eugene Airport and several economic development groups secured a half-million dollar grant to help establish the new service. Dave Hauser is President of the Eugene Chamber of Commerce:


Millions of people around the world will be watching Eugene this weekend. This year’s Prefontaine Classic track and field meet takes place Friday and Saturday at Hayward Field.

Friday night’s free program includes the men’s 5,000 and 10,000 meter races. Local favorite Galen Rupp will run the 5K and Olympic champion Mo Farah is entered in the 10K. Prefontaine spokesman Jeff Oliver says the entire meet will be outstanding: